I am 5' 3 ¾”. In the fancy new shoes that just arrived to complement my fancy new dress I will be 5' 5 ¾" this weekend. So get out of my way, Pediatrics Foundation- I might crush you.
Originally I was much shorter. Say about 20 inches or so. Then I grew, but not a whole hell of a lot. For a while there I was the shortest kid in every class. I am also not very coordinated. These two facts make it even more endearing that my big brother not only took me everywhere with him, but insisted that I get to play basketball too. Really insisted. "If she doesn't play I am taking the ball and going home" insisted. Not only would I get to play, but Mark would pass me the ball every chance he got.
"You can do it, Jules! Take the shot!"
And I would glance up at the net, poke my tongue through my lips in supreme concentration, and hurl the ball as hard as I could, about two feet off the ground.
"Good try! A little higher next time," would be Mark's only comment while his friends groaned and mentally added basketballs to their Christmas/Hanukkah lists.
I didn't care. My older brother thought I was great and I could do anything.
Ideally I would wrap this story up by telling you that I went on to lead our girls' basketball team to the State finals while my brother cheered from the stands. Unfortunately, I suck at basketball. Once, one time, I sank a lay-up during gym class and that was it. If you ask my brother, though, if you called him up right now and asked him, he would say that I was pretty good with the net. I just need a little coaching, but I can contribute. He would also tell you that I am the smartest person he knows. That I am beautiful. That I am the greatest writer, best statistician, funniest storyteller... and it is not that I am a bad driver, I just need a little more practice.
I love my brother.
Patrick needs a brother.